Tottenham Hotspur

Tottenham Hotspur

Premier League • England

Cristian Stellini sack: Tottenham seriously considering another change as players lose confidence in caretaker boss

Tottenham assistant manager Cristian Stellini

Tottenham Hotspur could part company with their acting head coach Cristian Stellini in the wake of their 6-1 defeat to Newcastle United, reports are claiming.

Stellini stepped up to take charge of Tottenham when Antonio Conte left the club in March 2023. Having been Conte’s assistant, it was seen as a peculiar decision by some. And the results that have followed have made it even more questionable.

On Sunday, Tottenham collapsed in a 6-1 defeat to Newcastle. They conceded five goals within the opening 21 minutes as Stellini’s selection decisions (including lining up with a back four, as opposed to the back-three system that the squad have become used to in recent years) backfired.

And after he accepted full responsibility, it could prove costly to his future, with several sources now claiming Tottenham are considering his future.

According to the Evening Standard, the chances of Stellini completing the season are in ‘serious doubt’. In fact, there isn’t even a confidence that he will be on the touchline for their next match, against Man Utd on Thursday.

The report claims he has ‘lost the confidence’ of the Tottenham squad – some of whom were surprised to see him given the responsibility of managing them for the rest of the season in the first place. Therefore, he might receive his marching orders too.

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Sky Sports News has also confirmed that Tottenham are holding discussions about Stellini’s future this afternoon (Monday).

Both the Standard and Sky say the ‘obvious’ contender to take the reins from Stellini would be Ryan Mason. Of course, the ex-Tottenham midfielder previously endured a similar spell after the sacking of Jose Mourinho two years ago.

According to the Standard, Mason is indeed ‘open’ to taking charge of Tottenham for their remaining six matches this season.

Harry Redknapp recommended for Tottenham caretaker role

Another suggestion could be ex-Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp, who has confirmed he would be open to returning to the club at the age of 76 after previously throwing his hat into the ring when Conte lost his job.

Redknapp told talkSPORT: “It’s very, very unlikely they would come knocking for me, I’ll be truthful. But if they did, of course I would go back and take it. I’m not sitting here by the phone waiting for a phone call, that’s for sure.

“It’s disappointing to see. Yesterday was a big disappointment.”

The radio station’s pundit Ally McCoist has also claimed that giving Redknapp the job wouldn’t be the worst idea.

McCoist said: “I actually think Harry wouldn’t have been a bad idea. Actually a good idea, he knows the club, knows the players.

“They just want a level of consistency and performance, the top four is away. They aren’t catching [Manchester] United or Newcastle.

“Long-term, I don’t know. Are they going to go for Vincent Kompany, are they going to go for [Mauricio] Pochettino? But something has to be done. That yesterday, five-nothing down after 20 minutes. Dear me.”

After this season, it remains likely that Tottenham will look elsewhere for a new permanent manager. That search has been ongoing since Conte’s departure, but once again looks like it could throw up plenty of difficulties.

Following their loss to Newcastle, Tottenham find themselves six points behind the top four. The only three sides they can mathematically (yet unrealistically) catch all have games in hand over them too.

Indeed, Spurs may well be looking over their shoulders more now. Aston Villa are in sixth, two points behind them. In seventh are Liverpool, three points beneath Spurs but with a game in hand and a superior goal difference.

In eighth, Brighton are four points off Tottenham with three games in hand. Therefore, Spurs might even be at risk of falling out of the European qualification places altogether unless they can get a grip.